How do you sell more books? This is a question I hear frequently from authors in our community. When you've done the hard work of writing a book, when you've even managed to get your book published, it would be nice to be able to get your book into the hands of readers. But anyone who has published a book knows that selling books isn't simple.
That's where Publisher Rocket, a powerful piece of book marketing software, comes in. What is Publisher Rocket, and will it help you in your book writing and marketing efforts? In this post, I'll be sharing my Publisher Rocket review. I'll also talk about how I personally use this book marketing tool.
Before we get started though, I wasn’t paid to write this review, but I do want to be fully transparent and let you know that the links below are affiliate links. Of course, this won’t affect your overall price, and it didn’t affect my decision on the software.
Take a look at Publisher Rocket. Now, let's jump in.
How I Personally Use Publisher Rocket
I know I'm not the only one who struggles when it comes to writing titles, subtitles, and the description for my books. How do you sum a whole book into a few words or a single phrase or a short description? It's impossible.
What I've learned after publishing ten books is that your book title, subtitle, and book description are actually not meant to describe the contents of your book.
Using Publisher Rocket, I've been able to find the right words to use to make sure my book finds the right readers. I've used it to convince publishers to buy books I've written. I used it to make one of my books into a #1 bestseller in its category on Amazon. I even used it to get my book Crowdsourcing Paris: Memoirs of 12 Parisian Adventures ready to publish.
How does Publisher Rocket work, though? And will it help you? Let's talk about that next.
What is Publisher Rocket?
Publisher Rocket, formerly called KDP Rocket, is a keyword research tool that helps you understand how readers use Amazon and choose the books they buy. It's compatible both with PCs and Macs, which is nice, and you can download it here.
Publisher Rocket is essentially a research tool. It helps self-published authors understand what readers actually want, and how to connect with them with your books. But it's not just for self-published or independent authors—traditional publishers use it too.
Here are some things you can discover in Publisher Rocket:
- What phrases Amazon buyers are actually searching for.
- The psychology of how readers choose to buy books.
- How much money readers are spending on certain niches and topics.
- How much money specific books are making per month (for example, books that might be competing with yours).
With this knowledge, you can reverse engineer titles, subtitles, descriptions, and even entire books—if you want—and be confident that they will do well on the Amazon marketplace and other online outlets too.
There are four main tools within Publisher Rocket that help you reverse engineer your book's sales copy (remember, your book's title and subtitle are sales copy):
- Keyword Search Feature
- Competition Analyzer Feature
- Category Search Feature
- AMS Keyword Search Feature
I'll briefly describe each feature and how they can help you.
The 4 Publisher Rocket Search Features (and How They Can Help You Sell More Books)
Let’s take a look at the four search features on Publisher Rocket, the kinds of data they provide, and how you can use that data to boost your book sales.
To learn more about each feature, click here.
1. Keyword Search Feature
This feature is designed for one purpose: setting your Amazon keywords.
When you publish your book on Amazon, you get to choose up to seven keywords that describe your book. Choosing these keywords is tricky, and most people just write whatever comes to mind so they can move on to publishing. But that's a huge mistake, because these seven keywords can make or break your book's success.
Without any data on which keywords will actually help your book, you’re just guessing. This is why Publisher Rocket’s ability to help you determine the best keywords is so helpful.
Here’s how you can use it to choose the best keywords for your book:
- Enter your keyword ideas. Start by typing your book's topic, genre, subgenre, book idea, or some other phrase that describes your book into Rocket’s Keyword Search tool.
- Get the data. Publisher Rocket will create a list of relevant keywords, along with extensive supplemental data. For each keyword, you’ll learn five things: the number of other books using that keyword, monthly earnings for that keyword, estimated Google searches per month, estimated Amazon searches per month, and how hard it will be for your book to compete for that keyword.
- Choose the best keywords for your book. Find your best keywords by looking for the “sweet spot” that balances all the metrics. Ideally, you want a keyword with a high search volume, low competitive score, and with reasonable earnings.
Depending on your area of writing, that can be difficult to find. But at least with Rocket’s information, you know what you’re going up against.
Once you've created a good list of keywords, you can also use them in your subtitle and book description to better sell your books.
Keep in mind that the data you get is real, but it's also subject to change as people search for different kinds of books over time. You may have to update your keywords periodically based on what people are searching. The good news, though, is that with Publisher Rocket, you can keep track of profitable keywords and make strategic decisions about when you should choose new ones.
2. Category Search Feature
Keywords are only one tool Amazon uses to put your book in front of readers. The book categories you select determine where your book ends up on Amazon's website and which readers get recommended your book.
Categories are the genres and subgenres that you can place your book in on Amazon, and it’s important to categorize your book well. Readers trying to buy a new science fiction novel will be hard-pressed to find yours if it’s grouped with cozy mystery novels.
Publisher Rocket has an entire database of Amazon categories and subcategories that you can search to find the right one for you. And once you’ve found a prospective category, you can dig deeper for more detailed data about it.
Here's how Publisher Rocket makes categories fun. If you want your book to become a bestseller, you have to rank #1 in the category you selected. But how many books do you have to sell to rank #1? And what if you could choose a smaller, less competitive category so that you could more easily rank #1?
That's information you can find in Publisher Rocket. In fact, Rocket will tell you just how many books you need to sell to rank #1 in that category.
Reach number one in a category, and you’ll receive Amazon’s orange bestseller ribbon, which will help you sell even more books.
It was by figuring out the relevant categories that I was able to get one book I publish a #1 bestseller tag by its title for months on end without changing its marketing in any other way. I couldn't have done that without Publisher Rocket.
And it all starts with knowing which categories are the best fit for your book.
3. Competition Analyzer Feature
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could see how much money the books similar to yours are making? For example, say you're writing a memoir about Paris, as I did. Wouldn't it be nice to see how well two of the biggest books in the genre are doing: Paris to the Moon or A Paris Year? (Not so well, believe it or not: $163 per month and $542 per month respectively.)
How do you find out? This is what Publisher Rocket’s competition analysis comes in. Enter your topic into the search bar, and Rocket responds with a list of your top ten books that are similar to yours.
Rocket breaks down your competitors with the following information:
- Age of book (in days)
- The ABSR
- Whether or not there is a keyword in the title
- Keyword in subtitle
- Estimated daily sales
- Estimated monthly sales
- The link to each book’s sales page
This information will help you understand how your book stacks up next to others like it.
For me, this is my favorite part of Publisher Rocket, because it lets me see how the books I love (or hate!) are actually performing in the marketplace, and when you have a better understanding of readers in the market, you can better figure out how your books can fit into the market.
4. AMS Keyword Search Feature
Amazon's native advertising system, AMS ads, can be incredibly powerful. One of my books currently sells 400 to 600 copies and makes over $2,400 per month all because of Amazon ads. And the book was published over 10 years ago!
But book ads can also be a huge waste of money if you don't use them right.
Choosing your target keywords to list your book under for your AMS ads is a similar process to choosing standard Amazon keywords. But there are other criteria that factor into a good AMS keyword, and Publisher Rocket’s AMS Keyword Search feature can help do the work for you.
Just like the Keyword Search Tool, you'll use the AMS Keyword Tool to search for your book's topic, genre, subgenre, book idea, or some other phrase related to your book. But you can also search for phrases that your readers might use, like “Books like Ready Player One” or “similar authors to Ray Bradbury.”
Then, through Publisher Rocket's AMS keyword search, you’ll get data on more than just standard keywords. It also provides you with author names, book titles, and ASINs of related works.
Even though my books have made thousands of dollars because of AMS ads, I'm far from an expert. If you're interested in learning more about how to use AMS ads for your books, check out Dave Chesson's free AMS Ads course. It's really helpful (and, again, free), and will absolutely help you sell more books.
Think Publisher Rocket will be helpful to you? Download it here or read on for my final review.
Publisher Rocket Review: Is Publisher Rocket Right for Me?
Publisher Rocket has a bit of a learning curve. It took me three or four tries to get information that I could use to actually start to sell more books. (That was only after I had spent several hours figuring out how much my favorite authors were actually making from their books.)
You also only get information on the U.S. market, and many of my books sell well internationally, not just in the U.S.
That being said, Publisher Rocket has helped me:
- Convince a publisher to buy one of my books.
- Helped another book become a perpetual #1 bestseller.
- Write more effective book descriptions.
Plus, Dave Chesson, the creator of Publisher Rocket, has announced Rocket's coming expansion into other major Amazon countries, so soon I'll be able to find data that will help me boost my international sales as well.
They also have excellent customer support, so if you run into problems or need help to get the most out of Rocket, it's easy to get the assistance you need. And they offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, so if you give it a try and decide it's not for you, there's no risk.
My Final Publisher Rocket Review
Yes, I recommend Publisher Rocket.
It's one thing to publish your book on Amazon. It's another to strategically position your book so that readers can find it and maximize your sales. I've found Publisher Rocket to be an invaluable tool for my own books, giving me the data I needed to double or even triple my sales and publish bestselling books.
If you're serious about writing and publishing great books, I recommend getting Publisher Rocket to help you make the most on Amazon. It has the power to transform your book marketing with just a few searches.
And as an extra bonus, it's fascinating—and just plain fun—to look up books and authors you love and see how they'rereally performing on Amazon.
Ready to download Publisher Rocket and sell more books?
Have you tried Publisher Rocket? What do you think? Let us know in the comments.
How would readers find your book on Amazon? For today's practice, brainstorm keywords and search terms for your book.
First, think about your book. What's it about? What's the genre? What kinds of words would describe it?
Then, think about your ideal readers. What do they want in a book? What are they looking for?
Take fifteen minutes to brainstorm a list of words and phrases that describe your book. When you're done, share your list in the practice box below. Be sure to leave feedback on your fellow writers' ideas, too.
And if you decide to get Publisher Rocket, try entering those phrases in the Keyword Search tool to get real-time data on what your potential readers are actually looking for!
Enter your practice here:
Joe Bunting is an author and the leader of The Write Practice community. He is also the author of the new book Crowdsourcing Paris, a real life adventure story set in France. It was a #1 New Release on Amazon. Follow him on Instagram (@jhbunting).
Want best-seller coaching? Book Joe here.